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Albert Lea Electric was founded in 1919 by Lou Gordon and Edward Nolting, who originally named the company Central Electric Co. They offered electrical contracting services and a retail store that sold small and large appliances. In 1928 the name was changed to Gordon Electric Co. Lou also changed locations so he could expand his service capabilities. When Lou moved to the new location, he wanted to tear the building down so he could build a more modern facility. Unfortunately, Lou never had the time to begin this project. He instead began to focus on another venture called Albert Lea Tool Co. Then, 18 years later, they renovated their building. By this time, Lou’s sons (Burt, Melvin, and Eugene, and son-in-law Frank Tokman) were fully involved with the business.

After World War II, the Gordons expanded their retail sales to include televisions and more refrigerators. They used to sell refrigerators by following the ice truck around town that serviced ice boxes for their customers. The Gordons would sell their customers on the ease, convenience, and cost savings of electric fridges versus the then conventional ice boxes. By the early 1950s, the annual winter ice harvest at Fountain Lake ended.

In 1961, Lou Gordon died, and his sons decided it was time to demolish their current store—one of the oldest buildings in the city at that time—and replace it with a new, 60-foot by 80-foot building.

In March 1986 Gordon Electric Co. was sold to Mick Delger and C. Doug Hill, who changed the name of the company to Albert Lea Electric Co. Cal Johnson became a partner in 1993 and eventually bought out C. Doug Hill.

Albert Lea Electric Co. now employs over 30 people. Please take a look at our services page to see how we can assist you with your electrical needs, or call us at 507-373-6650 for a service estimate.

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